What are the steps I need to take to evict tenants living at my house?

UPDATED: Aug 2, 2011

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

UPDATED: Aug 2, 2011Fact Checked

Get Legal Help Today

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

What are the steps I need to take to evict tenants living at my house?

In short, I have been renting my house to a few friends for some time. However, they’re repeatedly late with rent and disrespectful to my house. I want to evict them as soon as possible. However, I don’t know how to do this, and I want to comply with the law completely. Another thing to add is they are under no leasing agreement. They never signed anything to stay at my house, they merely have shared quarters. Their stay hasn’t been legally binding in any way. So how do I get them out of my house?

Asked on August 2, 2011 Tennessee


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Whether or not there is a written lease the law will consider then to be tenants; month-to-month. Accordingly, they will have to be served with proper notice to vacate. In this situation 30 days is appropriate. If they do not leave by the date specified in the notice you will have to file an "unlawful detainer" action in court (i.e. eviction lawsuit). The court will then issue an order for them to vacate. If they still fail to do so then you can have the sheriff evict them. In the meantime do not use any self-help measures such as changing the locks or removing their belongings; you would then be liable for unlawful eviction.

At this point consult with an attorney in your who handles these matters. They can advise you on the proper form of notice that must be given under TN and other procedures to follow. Possibly the applicable court in your area can also be of help. Additionally, sometimes these forms can be found on-line.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption